Word & Image: Ryan Gartrell 

Second Chance Bail Bonding

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We've been in the business since 2005 and you know we have drawn some trends out of it. … The ones we usually do bonds for are drug offenses, and the No. 2 one, unfortunately, being assaults. … but as it gets close to the holidays, and especially close to Christmas, we see an increase in larceny crimes.

We had one just a couple weeks ago that absolutely blew my mind. We had a gentleman who was the vice-president of [Pepsi-Cola Bottling Group] and he was arrested inside a local retail store for stealing water balloons. And that one still puzzles me. It's the wackiest thing I ever saw. .… He was very candid in the fact that he just wanted to see if he could get away with it. Never did he think that a 99-cent pack of water balloons was going to get this guy arrested, but this store has a zero-tolerance policy on shoplifting, so it doesn't matter what you take, you're getting arrested.

He actually was going to be released and then he caused a little stink so they decided to take him to jail and he ended up having to get bonded out for that. To me, that's just amazing some of the stupid things that people do, but that's what keeps me in business — people doing crazy stuff like that.

We've had our share of people breaking into people's homes and stealing everything from their big-screen TV to their refrigerator, whatever they can throw on a truck. We're probably doing 10 to 12 bonds a week right now and half of those deal with petty or grand larceny.

[It's] really kind of like this 'til just after the new year, as weird as that is. You'd think it'd kind of stop once people get their stuff for Christmas.
We did a bond for a lady not that long ago who got caught stealing baby formula down at the South Park area and she was very honest. Yep, I stole it, but you know, I needed it and I couldn't get it any other way. … Actually I think the judge would be, you know, a little bit surprised if she goes in there with that same candid attitude: “I know what I did was wrong but I needed it and I stole it and I'm here to admit to it.” They'd probably get a little bit of a break because all the cases that we go to, all I hear is the judge repeating over and over again how tired they are of people lying to them. — as told to Amy Biegelsen; photo by Scott Elmquist

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